No. 5 UNC puts bite on No. 7 Loyola, 12-9 Hounds' Brown superb, but Heels stay perfect

March 10, 1996|By Gary Lambrecht | Gary Lambrecht,SUN STAFF

The Loyola Greyhounds had history working in their favor yesterday against visiting North Carolina, but little else.

The Tar Heels countered with too much of junior Merrill Turnbull on attack and too many precise passes and shots, and North Carolina overcame an excellent effort by Greyhounds goalie Jim Brown to earn a 12-9 victory before 1,096 chilled spectators at Curley Field.

The fifth-ranked Tar Heels (4-0), after feasting on overmatched opponents Radford, Navy and Penn State, reversed some recent misfortune against their first top 10 counterpart.

Coming into yesterday, seventh-ranked Loyola (1-1) had won its past three meetings with the Tar Heels, and five of its past seven. North Carolina coach Dave Klarmann, in his sixth year there, has lost only 17 games. Four of them have come against the Greyhounds, who defeated North Carolina twice in 1995, including in the NCAA tournament first round.

"It's nice to turn that [trend] around," Klarmann said. "This team has a lot more focus and determination this year. I think we can play with anyone this year."

Although the Tar Heels did not put away Loyola until the closing minutes, when they took a 12-8 lead with a 3-0 run that began in the middle of the fourth period, they left little doubt about which ,, squad has more talent.

Offensively, Turnbull, senior midfielder Jason Wade (Severn) and senior attackman Brendan Carey outscored Loyola by themselves. Turnbull was a terror on the crease, with a game-high five goals. Wade had four goals and one assist. Carey chipped in a goal and a game-high four assists.

Loyola coach Dave Cottle figured he would have to slow down the Tar Heels -- who had blitzed their first three opponents with 66 goals on 228 shots -- by throwing zone defenses at them. Nice try. North Carolina simply showed it can control a team slowly out of a settled offense, without relying on a barrage of fast breaks.

Only a superb effort by Brown -- who is filling the shoes left behind by former three-time All-America goalie Tim McGeeney -- kept the Tar Heels from pulling away early. Brown, a redshirt freshman, recorded 19 saves, including four in the opening three minutes, when North Carolina uncorked seven shots without finding the target.

Loyola then got the Tar Heels' attention by taking a 2-0 lead on goals by David Mahoskey and Gewas Schindler.

By that point, however, the Greyhounds had suffered a costly setback. With 11: 17 left in the first quarter, sophomore attackman Todd Vizcarrondo took a hard, clean hit to the upper body, hit the cold turf hard and left the game after several minutes with a broken collarbone. He probably will miss the rest of the season. Vizcarrondo missed the final six games of last season with a broken collarbone.

"That was one of the low points," said Cottle, who may reshirt Vizcarrondo. "He's our best offensive player and our best attackman in our extra man.

"I feel good about our effort. We played much better than we did last week [in a 14-7 victory over Notre Dame]. I thought we really competed with a team that is much better than us. We wanted to make them stand around a little bit on offense, and we did that. They have taken more shots in four games than a lot of teams take in a whole season. We just turned the ball over too much against a senior-laden team. They are good. We're getting better."

The Tar Heels got better quickly after surrendering the first two goals. Turnbull's first goal, an extra-man score, tied the game at 2. Turnbull then put the Tar Heels on top 3-2 five minutes into the second quarter. With his back to the goal, he took a feed from Wade, and shot the ball over his head into the upper right corner of the net.

Loyola never led after that, as the teams traded goals after that for most of the quarter. With a minute left, Brian Bacso -- who found the going tough after a six-goal effort against Notre Dame -- scored his only goal to pull the Greyhounds to within 6-5.

But with one second left in the half, Wade scored to put North Carolina on top 7-5.

Three times in the second half, Loyola cut the Tar Heels' lead to one, before Wade sent a perfectly placed, 10-yard shot past Brown's left shoulder to make it 10-8 with 7: 55 to go. Loyola never seriously threatened after that.

Pub Date: 3/10/96

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